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Photo Canvas: Tips On Taking A Good Family Portrait

The Christmas is upon us and this is the perfect time to get your whole family together for a complete family portrait! However, taking a photo canvas-worthy family portrait for your can be exhausting and the results can often be underwhelming. On the other hand, getting a professional photo done by an experienced photographer can be expensive, not to mention the difficulties of coordinating a family to get their photo taken.

But fret not! Today, we’ve compiled a list of tips and tricks for you so you’ll be able to grow the skills you need to take beautiful family portraits that you’ll treasure forever!


The most difficult part of taking family photos is assisting with posing and coordination, particularly when working with children. It may take time, practice and a whole lot of patience to ensure your family photos look natural!

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Our tips:

  • Meet for the photo shoot at a time that will be convenient for the kids. If they tend to get cranky in the afternoon, plan the shoot for earlier in the day, not long after a meal. This is to ensure that your children will be more cooperative and happy during the photo shoot so that there’s no scowling preserved for eternity in a beautiful canvas print.
  • Bring anything that keeps children occupied on the shoot or even in between shots, like bubbles, toys or hats. These will keep them busy and can even add interesting detail to your shots!
  • Even if children aren’t involved, you can still incorporate some items such as props or flowers.


Dress everyone casually – comfort shows through. Avoid choosing clothing with patterns or loud prints as this can be very distracting. Instead choose solid colours where it would show up better in the photos!

Ideally, you want your family to be wearing similar colours, or coordinate the clothing so everyone’s in the same ballpark as far as colour and fabric (e.g. white shirts and denim jeans). But remember, there’s a fine line between coordinating and being too matchy-matchy. A family taking a family photo should have similar outfits but not wear exactly the same thing.


When directing for poses, ideally you should have a number of poses in mind that you’d like your family to use. When telling your family how to pose, try being as clear as possible. Instead of using directions like left and right, try to use objects to direct. For example, you might say “turn towards the tree,” or “look towards your partner”

Give your family things to do to be active in the shoot, like running, walking, playing or talking with each other, in order for you to take candid shots. Often these shots can look much more natural than posed shots!

Cheerful ethnic mother watching video via tablet with kids on bed


Ensure you don’t take your photos so that your family is looking directly into the sun. Contrary to popular belief, this can result in ugly shadows being cast in the front of the face and down the nose and chin. Your subjects will also be squinting and this can become very difficult to get a shot of the family with their eyes open. Instead, get them to turn around and shoot the opposite way.

Look for areas that offer some shade, like under trees, or on a porch. Always aim to shoot in the “golden hours” in the morning or evenings but if that isn’t possible definitely avoid shooting around noon as the light will be too harsh and will cause harsh shadows.


Even if your camera is top-of-the-line, choosing the right place to snap your portrait is essential. First and foremost, consider the light: The more natural light, the better your photo will turn out – but be prepared with some lighting to make certain your family is well lit. Choose a blank background – a minimalistic, clean wall is the best. Alternatively, family photo shoots could be done at the beach, a park, a garden, or a location that is meaningful to the family in some way. However, avoid busy timings as this can become very distracting for both you and the family! Make sure there’s nothing in the frame that you don’t want, or that could distract from the people.


Once you have a collection of beautiful family photos, most families will want prints. At Canvasjet, we have a large variety of photo canvas options for your family photos!

Our classic photo canvases are ideal for one large family portrait, or perhaps two smaller portraits to hang in living spaces or bedrooms. You could use portraits of children to hang in children’s bedrooms or playrooms, and couple shots for the bedroom!

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You can get creative with your photo canvases by creating a gallery-inspired wall collage to add some special character on your wall. Lay out some of your favourite photos of different photo canvas sizes on the wall!

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Alternatively, you can create a gallery wall by mixing Framed Photo Canvas prints.



You’re proud of your family – so it’s natural that you not only want to capture them in photos that show their fun, happy and loving nature, but you want to take those family portraits and create gorgeous photo canvas prints to hang on your walls with them. Our tips are sure to help your family’s personality will shine through and make any photo of them brilliant. Here at Canvasjet, we offer quality canvas printing . What are you waiting for, get your canvas prints today! 

Till next time, cheers!

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